For some areas of the country, the housing market has stalled - or even started to fall backward. Meanwhile, interest rates are starting to fall from their highs in December and January. This means many of those that recently bought a home could theoretically be able to refinance their homes sooner, rather than later, giving them a chance to give themselves a much lower payment.
But there's a problem - if your home loses value, some lenders won't let you refinance your property. You have to be able to make sure that your Loan to Value Ratio (LTV) is in a range that lenders will accept/approve in order to make sure that refinancing is worth their investment.
Improving the Value of Your Property
You cannot control the housing market. But you have a little bit of control over your property value. One way to make sure that your home retains - or even improves - upon its value is to upgrade it. That means investing some money into problem areas.
One of the most common areas where improvement can have real value is the bathroom. So many people find that their bathrooms and showers have aged considerably. By renovating the bathroom, you make sure that your property not only retains its value - it improves upon it. Shower niches are also useful for a property because they add depth and space, giving your bathroom a far more modern design with added practicality in a way that is otherwise fairly inexpensive.
If your plan is to refinance your property, and your location is starting to lose its value, renovation can help give you the best chance to keep your property value higher so that you can still refinance at a lower rate.
Here at Ledge Products, we typically sell shower niches in roughly standard sizes. We are unique in that we have recessed shower shelves that have a partition for better product organization, and shower niches in different lengths, but there are standard sizes used in the field that both fit perfectly between the studs and do not distract from the look of the property.
But it's not uncommon, especially in newer construction, for developers (as well as remodelers) to consider a more unique style, such as a round shower niche with shelves, or a niche that extends horizontally far more than 14 inches. Maybe you've even considered a niche that is highly unusual, in a strange shape or design.
We at Ledge Products have you covered.
As a GFRC manufacturer, our parent company is capable of creating GFRC products in essentially any shape and style. Within our shower niche services, we can make a niche that is in even the most complex of shapes, with our engineers there to help design it and our manufacturing team to turn it into a finished design. Perfect for hotels, condos, and any building that plans to have multiple shower niches, our custom designs are a great choice for adding some unique style to your bathrooms and showers.
Let us know what you need, and chances are our designers can make it happen. Contact us today to learn more.
Shower niches have become increasingly popular to install in bathrooms because of the way they simplify storage. Instead of a messy-looking collection of bottles on the floor or in a rickety shower caddy hung over the showerhead, a niche allows you to easily organize your bath products in one sturdy, easy-to-clean space.
A shower niche or recessed shower shelf doesn’t present just practical advantages, though. It can be part of a unique decorative effect that adds interest to the shower’s design and enhances the overall aesthetic of the bathroom.
Accent tiles used to finish a shower niche are a great way to create a particularly eye-catching effect. These tiles are complementary in appearance, not clashing with the other tiles or colors in the room, but serving as a highlight and reflection of the bathroom’s motif. Compared to the other tiles in the shower, niche accent tiles can be differently:
They can be entirely new tiles, or the same tiles as the others in the shower, just arranged differently. For example, instead of having your rectangular tiles be arranged horizontally like they are on the walls of your shower, the back of your niche could display them vertically.
A Personal Choice
Designers are mixed on whether or not a shower niche benefits from being accented. The end decision should be based on how much you like your tile, whether you need a statement in the shower or if you already have a statement (such as a backsplash), and how your shower niche is connected to other parts of the design - for example, the tile flooring. Many designers like the idea that the shower niche is hidden unless used, so that it blends in with the background. Others prefer a bit more wow to their look.
If you think the recessed design of your shower niche is accented enough for your shower you can just continue the design the rest of your tiles are arranged in, too. It’s hard to go wrong with a good tile and well-made and installed shower niche.
Whatever kind of tile you decide to use for your niche, make sure you hire a good contractor to help you install it. More than almost any decision you can make during the designing and decorating process, proper installation of all elements makes a huge difference in the longevity and enjoyability of your bathroom.
At Ledge Products, our recessed shower shelves are almost all 14" wide. Now, keep in mind that we are always willing to create custom products, and if you need a wider shower shelf for any reason, we will gladly assist by creating a custom niche that meets your requirements.
But you'll often find that our shower niches - as well as those of our competitors - are designed 14" wide. It's essentially the standard in the industry. But what do these 14 inches represent?
Stud to Stud - 16" Apart
The stud boards in your wall are, unless designed improperly, 16 inches apart center to center. Since they are built using 2x4s, that means that one inch on both sides is taken by the board. 16" - 1" - 1" = 14"." The shower niches are thus easily able to fit in between, using the studs to stay in place.
What if I Want a Wider Shower Niche?
Shower niches can be made wider. In new construction, a wider shower niche is rarely a problem, as the contractor will simply need to put the studs further apart. You can also cut into the studs as well and open a space for a wider niche or shower shelf, but keep in mind that doing so will cause structural changes that could affect other parts of your home, so only take that route when working with a qualified contractor.